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Texas County Clerks Prepare For Rush If Gay Marriage Legalized

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DALLAS COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) - All eyes are on the U.S. Supreme Court this morning since same-sex marriage is among the five cases still to be decided. But the Texas Attorney General has a message for County Clerks' Offices preparing to issue marriage licenses – not so fast!

The ruling to declare whether or not gay and lesbian couples can marry anywhere in the United States could come down as early as today.

In a statement issued before the Supreme Court ruling Attorney General Ken Paxton said, in part, "I would recommend that all County Clerks and Justices of the Peace wait for direction and clarity from this office about the meaning of the Court's opinion and the rights of Texans under the law."

Paxton went on to clarify that Texas law says marriage is between a man and a woman. Then, after the ruling legalizing same-sex marriage Paxton issued a statement that said, in part, "Today's ruling by five Justices of the U.S. Supreme Court marks a radical departure from countless generations of societal law and tradition. The impact of this opinion on our society and the familial fabric of our nation will be profound. Far from a victory for anyone, this is instead a dilution of marriage as a societal institution."

Despite the 'recommendation' officials in Dallas County say they're ready. If the court makes same-sex marriage lawful the Dallas County Clerk's Office says they're prepared to start issuing licenses within a few hours. They say they're also prepared to extend hours of operation, allow overtime and bring in more workers to help with the number of requests if necessary. There will also be judges will be available to marry couples.

Texas voters banned same-sex marriage in 2005.

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